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TO   THE   LIGHTHOUSE

sunny grass and discolour it, and cast over the

rubicund,  drowsy,  entirely contented figure of

Mr. Carmichael, reading a French novel on a

deck-chair, a veil of crape, as if such an existence,

flaunting its prosperity in a world of woe, were

enough to provoke the most dismal thoughts of

all.    Look at him, he seemed to be saying, look

at me;  and indeed, all the time he was feeling,

Think of me, think of me.    Ah, could that bulk

only be wafted alongside of them, Lily wished;

had she only pitched her easel a yard or two closer

to him;   a man, any man, would staunch this

effusion,   would   stop   these   lamentations.    A

woman, she had provoked this horror; a woman,

she should have known how to deal with it*    It

was immensely to her discredit, sexually, to stand

there dumb.    One said—what did one say?—

Oh, Mr, Ramsay 1    Dear Mr. Ramsay!    That

was what that kind old lady who sketched, Mrs.

Beckwith, would have said instantly, and rightly.

But  no.    They  stood  there, isolated from the

rest of the  world.    His immense self-pity, his

demand for sympathy poured and  spread itself

in pools at her feet, and all she did, miserable

sinner that she was, was to draw her skirts a little

closer round her ankles, lest she should get wet.

In complete silence  she stood there,  grasping

her paint brush.

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